Late drama see's the Lions snatch the points!
By Tony Shea
Pagham took all three points from their visit to Broadbridge Heath on Saturday, snatching the winner through sub Scott Murfin in the final minute.
The game started with a midfield stalemate and very little action at either end. Joe Booker was booked early on for a foul on the Bears dangerman Devon Fender but Fender got his revenge in the 14th minute when he latched on to a poor back-pass to round James Binfield and tap the ball home for his 14th goal of the season.
Lloyd Rowlatt had Pagham’s first shot in anger eight minutes later, but it hit the post and spun away to safety. Back came Broadbridge as the game changed up a gear and James Binfield had to be at his best to turn away another chance for Fender.
The Lions then started to make the running and had a few half chances before Joe Booker got his head to a Lloyd Rowlatt free-kick to bring his side level in the 35th minute. Pagham had got hold of the game now and Callum Overton was thwarted twice by the home keeper, once from a shot inside the box and then a 25 yard free-kick.
But then the game swung the other way and it was James Binfield’s turn to pull off a couple of good saves, both once again from Fender. But the half was soon over and the teams trooped off with the score at 1-1.
The first 20 minutes of the second half was very quiet with just a handful of half chances for both sides, none of which really bothered either keeper. The game then sprung to life with twenty odd minutes to go when a couple of changes by Pagham changed the whole aspect of the match.
Scott Murfin and Terrell Lewis came on for Joe Kilhams and Ryan Davidson, followed very soon after by George Cody replacing Johan Van Driel as the Lions looked to put some more pressure on the Bears defence. A flurry of bookings for both sides raised the atmosphere, but it was the home side that looked the more likely to score as they took advantage of more space in the Pagham defence.
It was Binfield once again to the rescue with less than ten minutes left, saving at the feet of Fender, as the Bears pushed forward, but in the final minute it was Lions sub Scott Murfin that scored the deciding goal, weaving in from the left and burying his shot under keeper Chester from the edge of the box.
Added time saw good chances for both sides as Broadbridge Heath pushed everyone bar the keeper forward and once again Binfield saved the day for his side with a brilliant save to deny the hosts. There was still time for Pagham to miss the best chance of the entire game when a three-on-one break was eventually cleared as Overton looked to finish things off. The whistle went a minute later to leave the home side disconsolate as Pagham celebrated a superb come from behind win!
The Pagham side was: James Binfield, Joe Kilhams (Scott Murfin), Daryl Wollers, Ryan Davidson (Terrell Lewis), Joe Booker, Jamie Horncastle, George Bingham, Johan Van Driel (George Cody), Callum Overton, Lloyd Rowlatt, and Ryan Cox. Subs not used: Neil Murfin and Andy Chick.